White bowl on cloud of white fabric
By Ai Su Kimberly Hillebrand

By engaging in a gratitude practice every evening, using a “gratitude bowl” to collect what we are grateful for, we have the potential to train our mind to identify and experience gratitude more fully in our lives. With practice, gratitude begins to be interwoven into our very being and starts to shape the way we see and interact with the world. This practice is designed to bring greater awareness of gratitude into everyday life which can bring a host of benefits, but above all else, a sense of interconnectedness and joy.

  1. Create a gratitude bowl (or simply designate a bowl for this purpose) that you will use daily to hold the experiences and things you are grateful each day.
  2. Note the shape of your bowl. Gratitude, too, is part of the circle of life. It’s a part of our wholeness that can easily be lost in the day-to-day shuffle of our everyday lives.  Awareness of gratitude in our lives brings forth more gratitude, and more gratitude, and even more gratitude. Over time we can become more whole beings by experiencing our lives through the lens of gratitude.  
  3. If you are decorating or painting your bowl, take some time to consider, in silence, all that you are grateful for. Let your spirit be awash in gratitude. And simply see what emerges as you decorate your bowl.
  4. Select a place to put your bowl where you will see it each day.
  5. Select a time each day to contemplate what you are grateful for on that particular day. Write down, on one or more pieces of paper, what you are grateful for and deposit your gratitude in the bowl. You may wish to add to this practice to create your own extended gratitude ritual.
  6. Whenever you notice your bowl, allow yourself to contemplate how your daily gratitude practice has impacted your own and others’ lives.

This practice was adapted from the original “Gratitude Bowl Practice” developed by Ai Su Kimberly Hillebrand.